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Brain Tumor Research

Dedication to Neuro-Oncology Research

Researchers at the University of Michigan Rogel Cancer Center are working to better understand and treat brain cancer.

The Rogel Care Center’s research mission allows patients to receive bench-to-bedside therapies before they are available anywhere in the world. In fact, clinical trials are significant part of the Neuro-oncology Program’s dedication to advanced research and availability of innovative treatments.

With every step of discovery, development, and delivery under our roof, our neuro-oncologists’ academic approach allows us to better integrate research with clinical care. Our research and clinical trials are actively studying every stage of the care journey for brain and spinal cord tumor patients -- including diagnosis, treatment, and remission. That dedication to innovative care also includes our providing one of the only Brain Metastases Clinics in the country.

Our goal is to reduce the burden of cancer for patients. The highly skilled and experienced neuro-oncology teams can help patients decide if joining one of our clinical trials might be right choice.

Pioneering Research in Brain Tumor Care

Our brain tumor research involves laboratory studies of the nature of tumor cells and their response to treatment. Research of this type in the Neuro-oncology Program includes our Brain Metastases Clinic, where a multidisciplinary care team is dedicated to studying tumors that have spread to other areas.

Our program has made significant advances in our understanding of:

  • Abnormal genes that cause brain tumors
  • Abnormal stem cells in the brain that give rise to tumors
  • Actions of radiation-sensitizing drugs (drugs that make radiation more effective)
  • Applications of nanotechnology to treat brain tumors
  • Brain tumor metastases to better understand the mechanisms of tumor development and improved treatment options
  • Immunotherapy approaches to treating brain metastases

Laser ablation research that includes the biopsy of cancer lesions to learn about improved testing to determine if the lesion is active cancer or scarring. Some of our other research involves neuro-imaging. Neuro-imaging studies by members of the Neuro-oncology Program have addressed:

  • MRI diffusion studies to evaluate treatment effects on tumors and the body
  • MRI spectroscopy to distinguish tumor regrowth from radiation effects
  • PET (positron emission tomography) to establish tumor diagnosis
  • PET to evaluate tumor aggressiveness and treatment response
  • PET to evaluate drug delivery to tumors

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